Dr. Doan recognized that Vietnam has a serious shortage in primary care physicians and this deficit is even greater in the rural areas, and thus, created a Not-for-profit organization to provide medical, dental and optometry care to the rural poor in Vietnam, through field clinics and surgical services four times annually. The goal is to provide care to the people of Cao Bang province, a rural resource poor community in Northern Vietnam, as well as train local doctors. The physicians in the rural commune medical centers are general doctors who have graduated directly from medical school and have not had postgraduate training and yet are responsible for the care of thousands of people in these rural villages. Most graduates are unable to pursue residency training and thus must gain clinical experience on their own. We provide a 3-year longitudinal curriculum which includes didactics, procedural and clinical training, covering all the US family medicine training core competencies, to the local village doctors.
The people of the Cao Bang province, a rural resource poor community in Northern Vietnam. In this province, there is a serious shortage in primary care physicians and the healthcare of this population is therefore sacrificed.
The impact expected is multifold, positively affecting both the rural Vietnam population, and also us trainees. The population we are serving will receive our medical evaluations to help them lead a healthier life. We will also be able to share our training with the local Vietnam medical natives so they can better care for their population in need. Additionally, we will bring back skills that we learn abroad from using limited resources to treat the whole person, and provide more compassionate care back here in the U.S. We will also learn to think more on our feet and use what we have and make intentional medical decisions.
The community of southern Vietnam in Can Tho was beautiful. We went into different villages every day and set up our clinic in classrooms of schools. After all medicine is about teaching and listening. We would set up medical rooms in addition to dental, optometry, and pharmacy. I was able to give knee injections to relieve their pain, and we sponsored many patients to get their needed surgeries. I had one patient who we sent for thyroid surgery and another for kidney stone removal. We were able to there for communities who have dealt with health issues for way too long. They were so grateful and so I am to have had the opportunity to meet this beautiful country.